When you walk into Leilu on New Street, Huntington, you’re not walking into just another restaurant: no, you’re walking into a two-story space where dreams and hospitality are realized. You are greeted with a picture of their two daughters, Leila and Lucie, who combined created the name “Leilu.” On your left, a gallery wall of the progression from purchase to opening day takes you through the journey it took owners, James and Meghan LaCourte, to get here. In the entrance, a quote from their restaurant idol, Danny Meyers, is framed on the wall outlining the mission and ethos of Leilu for all to see. From the moment you step foot into their restaurant you know who they are and what motivates them to do the job that they’re doing: family, community and a love for the restaurant industry.
During the first year of business, arguably the hardest year for any business, Meghan and James faced an unprecedented obstacle. Back in March, when Covid-19 first stopped the world in its tracks, the owners of Leilu had to adjust fast and they did it with grace. Creating meal kits and fun to-go options kept Leilu moving and in the meantime, they never lost their sense of humor. Leilu’s Instagram is a fun mix of mouth-watering food shots and quotes: creating a branded sense of community that their followers love so much.
We recently sat down with James, Meghan, Leila, and Lucie to learn more about Leilu and all things that make it special. As Chamber members, we wanted to learn more about their “why” and what drove them to open a restaurant in Huntington. We learned how they create their menu seasonally, how they aim to be approachable for all dietary needs and restrictions, and how their goal is to continue to grow their base of regulars because they love this town so much.
To quote Danny Meyers from their frame: “In the end, what’s most meaningful is creating positive, uplifting outcomes for human experiences and human relationships. Business, like life, is all about how you make people feel. It’s that simple. And it’s that hard.” Leilu is not just another restaurant in Huntington: no, it’s another key to the community we value and love.
You can learn more about Leilu by watching our video below!
LEILU HUNTINGTON: 10 New Street, Huntington NY- 631-944-3111